Tuesday, 27 September 2016
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From the start it was understood that transforming California State Parks could not only be an introspective exercise. Transformation would require an outside contingent of experts to vet ideas, provide outside perspective and input.

For the past 18 months, a dedicated set of volunteers made up of members from government, non-profit partners, business and academia with a passion for state parks has fulfilled that role. This committee, dubbed “Transformation Advisory Committee”, was formed to provide high-level guidance to the Transformation Team, including feedback on key work products.

The committee meets on a monthly basis to hear presentations by the Transformation Team members and various committee representatives on various projects. After each session, the committee is asked for comment such as for the focus of various initiatives, key findings, and draft recommendations and suggestions for engagement of external expertise and support.

While some of that input comes at the formal meetings, more comes in the days and weeks later when individual members call or write to the department to share ideas after giving consideration and thought to information presented to the committee. Members have been especially valuable in providing perspective on issues involving partnerships, relevancy and inclusion.

This dedicated group has been engaged and committed throughout the process. Their efforts have been invaluable in helping to shape the Transformation and set California State Parks on a measured and focused path for the future. The efforts of each Committee member are greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Below you will find the list of the Transformation Advisory Committee Members:


  • Ted Cabral, Chair, Off-Highway Vehicle Commission (Sonoma County Zone 2A Flood Advisory Committee)
  • Michael Cohen, Director, Department of Finance
  • Karen Finn, Program Budget Manager, Department of Finance (Natural Resources, Energy, Environment, Capital Outlay)
  • Caryl Hart, Ph.D., Director, Sonoma County Regional Parks (Parks Forward Commissioner)
  • Douglas Metz, Commissioner, Boating and Waterways Commission
  • Julianne Polanco, State Historic Preservation Office, Office of Historic Preservation, California State Parks
  • John Reynolds, Retired, National Park Service (Parks Forward Commissioner)
  • Ken Wiseman, Executive Director, Parks Forward Commission
  • Diane Wittenberg, Chair, California State Parks Commission

 Non-Profit Partners

  • Carolyn Christian, President, California League of Park Associations (CALPA) and Friends of Pio Pico, Inc.
  • Heidi Doyle, Executive Director, Sierra State Parks Foundation
  • Gina Fromer, California Director, Trust for Public Land
  • Mary Creasman, California Director of Government Affairs, Trust for Public Land
  • Elizabeth Goldstein, President, California State Parks Foundation
  • Bonny Hawley, Executive Director, Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks
  • Paul Helman, Docent, California State Railroad Museum
  • Sam Hodder, President and CEO, Save the Redwoods League
  • Christine Kehoe, Executive Director, California Plug-in Electric Collaborative (Parks Forward Commissioner)
  • John Koeberer, President, California Parks Hospitality Association
  • Lisa Mealoy, Executive Director, Friends of Sutter’s Fort
  • Greg Moore, President, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy Board
  • Jack Seigal, Docent, California State Railroad Museum 


  • Pat O’Brien, President, O’Brien Consulting (former General Manager, East Bay Regional Park District)
  • Elva Yanez, President, Colibri Strategies (California Park & Recreation Commissioner)


  • Michael Woo, Dean CA State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Parks Forward Commissioner)


  • Stay abreast of the Transformation Team’s progress on their website.
  • The Transformation Team is interested to know your ideas, thoughts and comments. Let us know what you think.
  • Connect with us on Twitter and Facebook and stay updated on #TransformationTuesdays!
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